PENRITH, AUSTRALIA - MAY 17: Panthers coach Ivan Cleary speaks to the media after the round 10 NRL match between the Penrith Panthers and the New Zealand Warriors at Panthers Stadium on May 17, 2019 in Penrith, Australia. (Photo by Mark Kolbe/Getty Images)

Penrith Panthers coach Ivan Cleary has revealed it could be a good thing that the club have the bye next weekend after just two rounds of action.

The Panthers managed to pick up a victory over the South Sydney Rabbitohs at the foot of the mountains on Thursday evening to open Round 2, stopping their slide at home.

After losing the World Club Challenge and last Thursday's season opener to the Brisbane Broncos, both at home, the Panthers refound their touch at a ground they had won 31 of their last 34 matches at leading into the season - a streak which dated back to May of 2019.

Even then, it didn't come without a heartstopper at the end as a late Isaiah Tass try brought the Rabbitohs within a whisker of forcing golden point, and set up a grandstand finish.

The win will settle nerves for Penrith coach Ivan Cleary, who is looking to have his side become the first three-peat winners of the competition in the NRL era, with this season also following a handful of key off-season departures including star New South Wales Blues dummy half Apisai Koroisau.

The worry will stem deeper than just the form for Penrith though, with Ivan's son and star halfback Nathan Cleary limping off at halftime seemingly injured, before returning for the second half.

He never appeared at 100 per cent during the second half, but the coach used his post-game press conference to suggest there wasn't a great deal of concern over the Origin and Australian Kangaroos halfback.

"I don't know. They didn't seem too worried at halftime after they looked at it," Cleary told the media.

"There was a couple of guys actually injured at halftime, so we will have to assess it tomorrow of course. It might be a good time for a bye next week."

Asked if his son would need scans, the coach said it was likely.

The NRL Physio suggested on Twitter that if the damage sustained was limited to medial ankle ligaments, the damage for Cleary could be minimal.

The Panthers have the bye in Round 3, before taking on the Parramatta Eels in the grand final rematch on Thursday, March 23, with matches against the Canberra Raiders, Manly Sea Eagles and Newcastle Knights to follow before they take on the Rabbitohs again off a five-day turnaround in Round 8.